VF: Hi Ron. Good to hear from you again. Let's clear this up so you can get on with things!
Ron: I am fully clear in my head that, as you put it, "thought" is not necessary to know 'I exist". I can also see that 'sensations' coalesce to produce the body and the sensations are transitional. I fully understand when you say that forms take shape in the smoke. But these 'forms' demand to be fed. The body is not like a plant to get by itself 'freely' energy from the Sun. Body has to depend on some others.
VF: Everything depends on everything; and, if everything depends upon everthing, then nothing depends on nothing and all arises IMMEDIATELY in THIS NOW - including the seeming Ron's seeming questions!
Ron: Any sort of dependency implicitly removes one away from total Freedom (Independence).
VF: Total Freedom is a concept whose existence depends up another concept - Total Bondage. Struggling with these concepts keeps the seeming you trapped in duality - this approach is like trying to escape from a house of mirrors! There is no freedom - there is ONLY THIS. Right now! Leave the thinking alone - let it ramble on - it always has and always will. Stop!
Ron: But isn't one forced to see a distinction of this body versus that (bringing in otherness). Another aspect highlighting otherness (Not Oneness)?
VF: "Otherness" and "oneness" are both ideas, constructs, concepts, arising in this complete and total cognizing (thank you, Gilbert Schultz) emptiness that is beyond concept, construct and thought. This ground of being is our mother. There is no doubt that you and your mother are, in some relative way, separate. At the same time, can you deny your oneness? Of course not. What I am pointing you towards is the Mother of all - the Mother of the ten thousand things, as it is referred to in Taoism. Ron, "you" cannot know it or experience it - you can only give up and rest AS it. Trying to "know" or "experience" it via more thought only takes you further and further from home. Rest. Quit playing the game, and run home to your Mother. You've never left her, anyway.
Ron: Isn't this staring right in our face: if Vince feeds his body, this ron-body does not get fed. It still needs separate food. So Ron and Vince are two -- not one there!
VF: Try an experiment. Hold up your left hand, palm facing your face. Now, with a piece of paper, cover all of the palm so only the top half of the fingers are visible. Do the fingers appear to be separate? In some relative sense, are they separate? Remove the piece of paper. Are the fingers really separate?
As long as you identify yourself as a finger, these questions will continue to arise. Unquestionably, from the standpoint of a separate finger, these questions are legitimate and, seemingly, of great importance. See clearly that your premise is wrong. Your premise is itself a conceptual construct, "I am separate." You can ask as many questions as you'd like from the wrong premise and you will get a myriad of interesting and useless answers.
Begin with the premise that doesn't rely on any mental construct or fabrication - YOU EXIST. Before the thought "I AM," you are. Begin there and stay there and see what (if any) questions arise. When in doubt, just rest as awareness. Thought is a hungry ghost - to borrow a term from Buddhism - it has a voracious appetite but cannot find satisfaction.
Ron: Of course, I can develop an attitude of being unaffected and lead a 'what if' sort of life. But then it is an "Attitude." Not beingness, Brahman!
VF: No "attitude" will be necessary if you change your premise to what is without question.
Ron: Another serious doubt : Is that "SEEING" so called "Brahman state"? (I know state is a wrong word but used here to express that condition). Does not Brahman state imply omniscience, omnipresence etc. etc.?
VF: Is there any doubt that there is KNOWING right now? Can that be doubted? Isn't even the doubt KNOWN? Forget all of this and return to resting as awareness - simply rest as what you already are and let thought do whatever it does - there is no choice. Conceptual explanations such as "Brahman" are meaningless and worthless without resting as what you are BEFORE the concepts can arise. Rest; just rest. I hope this helps. Get back to me with more questions, as necessary. Be well.